Adapting a Skirt Pattern with Designer DetailsDraft a military-inspired look
During a recent online window-shopping spree, I discovered a skirt in a menswear-inspired fabrication that encapsulated some of my favorite style features: a flattering A-line silhouette enhanced with pleats and military-style details. Rather than contend with its nearly $1,800 price tag, I decided to build some of its details into an existing skirt pattern.
The key element that set this skirt apart was a peplumlike overskirt extending from the waistband to lower hip level, from side front to center back. I started with a gored skirt pattern with side-front and side-back seams and found it easy to add this feature, plus a generous knife pleat at each side-front seam. Follow along to see how I adapted McCall’s 6993, view B, to create the look.
Adapt the front and side front
Trace the front and side-front patterns onto paper. Leave space along the side-front edges to add pleat extensions. You’ll be using 5⁄8-inch-wide seam allowances throughout; as you develop the patterns, you’ll remove and replace these in some steps.
1. Lower the waist edge. This skirt pattern has a high waist. On the front, side front, side back, and back, draw the waistline, then add a 5⁄8-inch-wide seam allowance above it. Cut off the excess above the seam allowance.
2. Straighten the side-front edge. This seamline has a slight curve; you need to straighten it in order to add a pleat here. With a yardstick as a guide, draw a line connecting the waist edge to the bottom edge. Draw a line 5⁄8 inch inside this cutting line and label it “Pleat foldline.”
3. Add the front pleat extension. Draw a line parallel to and 2 inches out from the side-front edge. Draw another line 5⁄8 inch…